The Los Angeles Lakers gave us a convincing win in Game 2 over the Houston Rockets. Yet, all we can talk about is the play of Russell Westbrook, who essentially lost the game for Houston. Well, that may be a bit harsh. Westbrook had a miserable offensive game and is generally lost on defense. The Rockets shot the ball well not counting Russ. Their defense left much to be desired and Markieff Morris and Kyle Kuzma made them pay (yes, that’s what happened).
So Game 3 will be interesting, seeing which teams adjustments pay off. The Lakers adjusted after losing Game 1 and tightened things up on defense. LeBron James and Anthony Davis are going to play like this every game, so really it comes down to how the Rockets respond. Let’s take a look at some player prop bets to consider on DraftKings Sportsbook for Game 3 on Tuesday at 9:00 p.m. ET.
Russell Westbrook UNDER 22.5 points (-105)
I think we’ll see better defense overall from the Lakers on both James Harden and Westbrook. Sure, Russ hit the over with 24 points in Game 1. That seems like a best-case scenario for Westbrook right now — he barely gets to the over. If Westbrook watched the tape from his Game 2, it should be screaming at him to take fewer shots and let the guys who can shoot do the work.
The Lakers have guards who can contain Russ and it’s never going to be easy getting baskets at the rim with Davis down low. We should see more passing from Westbrook, more ceding the offense to Harden down the stretch, more kicking it out to guys who can make 3s. This number seems really high and the odds are fantastic.
Anthony Davis to score more points than James Harden (-107)
I’ll admit I’m a bit worried about Harden doing Harden things in Game 3. Still, you’ve got to take the value in this bet. Davis was dominant in Game 2 and the Lakers picked up an easy win. AD is shooting 62.5% from the floor on the series. He’s even stretching it out and knocking down 3-pointers, which is scary if you’re P.J. Tucker trying to defend the best big man in the NBA. You’d think with how easy it’s been for Davis to score that the Lakers would keep feeding him.
The Rockets also have no depth. Davis forcing fouls from Tucker and Robert Covington only puts Houston in worse position down the stretch. That’s the way to attack Game 3, so my expectation is Davis will outscore Harden. It may not be easy. It’s just hard seeing AD not dominating in the paint again. Also consider AD to be top point scorer again at +150 for some juice.
Russell Westbrook OVER 4.5 assists (-159)
I know this isn’t a great number at -159, but I almost fell off my dolphin after seeing the actual line of 4.5. Like, this seems like free money, right? I get that Harden has been handling the ball more and Russ isn’t racking up assists like we’re used to. But if there were ever a game for Westbrook to strictly look to set up his teammates, it’s coming off his Game 2 performance. So yes, I think Westbrook looked a film and is going to pass more, maybe get the ball to the rim and kick it out to shooters, that type of thing. You know, efficient offense or whatever. If we throw a unit or so on this, I mean, we still get a pretty decent payout.
Odds Boost Breakdown
AD and Harden to combine for over 61.5 points (+115)
This isn’t an awful way to hedge some of our bets above. I like AD to outscore Harden but in the event that Harden goes off, we can get the two combined at around their totals. Ultimately, I think AD will need to carry this number and get to around 35-38 points, but if that’s the case, we need less out of Harden, which is perfect. This boost is pretty appealing. The only cause for concern is the O/U is getting bet way down since last night. It’s still over 220 at 223.5, which is still pretty high.
LeBron James to record a triple-double (+215)
I was considering LeBron to get a triple-double before seeing the boost. The original number is +180 on the player props page on DKSB. So it’s not too much more juice. James came one assist shy of a triple-double in Game 2. He’s only got one triple-double all playoffs and the return of Rajon Rondo kind of hurts his chances at hitting the assist total. There’s also the negative trend of bettors going with the under. It seems the public thinks this game will be more defensive-minded than Game 2. It’s also tough for LeBron to get to the assist total unless he’s specifically feeding AD all game. This is a risky play in my eyes.
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